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Friday, August 10, 2012

Project 3: Upstairs Main Bathroom


Don't you love those simple home improvement projects that turn into a complete gut job and remodel??? (please note massive sarcasm in my typing...) I don't either, but that was the story behind our main bathroom reno.  Even though this was an unplanned effort, the resulting space is beautiful and well worth all of the time and energy spent to make it happen.




In the 'before' photos, you'll notice MANY elements of this bathroom that need to be tackled.  But for starters, I focused on the really bad caulking job in the shower area (definitely screamed, "home-owner-DIY-effort"). I found a local professional that could tackle this project for cheap, so I decided to move forward with this as our first 'to-do' in the bathroom. As soon as the contractor removed the thick caulking for the first row of tiles, about 13 tiles fell off the wall into the bathtub and broke into multiple pieces. Aaargh...things are not going to plan.

The shower tiles were something I had never seen before. These tiles were square, off-white, and textured (reminded me of an orange peel) -- honestly, they looked permanently dirty, even after being cleaned 3 times with bleach and Tilex. While I was researching replacement tiles for those that fell and broke, I came to find out that these tiles were discontinued about 30 years ago and now were priced at $15+ per tile and had to be special-ordered! Wow - if these tiles were amazingly beautiful, I would consider dishing out the money to replace. But, since I really didn't like them one bit, I decided to move to Plan B:  rip the remaining tiles out and replace with ceramic white subway tile (priced at about $1.80 per square foot - now we're talking!)

If you're keeping track, this simple project of having the shower re-grouted has now turned into:
  • Remove all old ugly, textured tile
  • Replace with white subway tile, grout, and re-caulk

Check out our beautiful model...

But...after taking a longer look around, I realized that the 80's shower faucet and drop ceiling over the shower area really should be addressed, if we were re-doing the shower tile.

Notice the drop-ceiling in the shower area...that needed to go!

Current project tally:
  • Remove all old ugly, textured tile
  • Replace with white subway tile, grout, and re-caulk
  • Remove drop-ceiling (will need to replace the light, too)
  • Update the faucet in the shower area
During the process of removing the drop-ceiling over the shower, I started peeling away at the horrible plaid wallpaper.  Hmmm...might as well add this to the list, too, while we're at it.  And, as long as we have the plumber here to replace the fixture in the shower, that toilet is REALLY old and needs to be replaced.

You get the picture...this one-time simple quick fix has really snow-balled into a massive overhaul.






Just in case you're keeping track, here's where we landed with updates to the bathroom:
  • Remove all old ugly, textured tile in the shower area
  • Replace with white subway tile, grout, and re-caulk
  • Remove drop-ceiling & replace the light over the shower area
  • Update the faucet in the shower area
  • Remove the wallpaper, repair the walls, and paint
  • Replace the toilet
  • Replace the outdated mirrors
  • Give the vanity a facelift + new hardware
  • New rugs, towels, accessories

Drum roll, please...I introduce you to our mostly new and hugely improved bathroom!


So much better with the white subway tiles and no drop ceiling


We'll get to replacing all of the doors in the house one day...on the list

I LOVE the finished product.  To this day, every moment I spend in the updated space makes me happy we tackled as much as we did, even though 98% of it was unplanned.

On to the next project...



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